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>> the stories we're following at this hour. awaiting the presidential go ahead. the u.s. military is ready to strike in syria over the use of chemical weapons. california's 11-day-old wildfire now has burn 60 square miles inside yosemite park. >> free at last. free at last. thank god almighty we're free at last. >> reporter: 50 years later a grand celebration of the most famous civil rights speech ever delivered by martin luther king.
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>> the clock is now ticking on u.s. military action in syria. a probably strike could come within days. u.s. warships are already in position, and the rest of the world is joining the debate on what kind of action should be taken and when. patty tells us what options president obama is weighing to stop the use of chemical weapo weapons. >> reporter: the president obama administration said they will respond to this, the use of chemical weapons in syria. the goal is not to remove bashir al-assad, but to send him a message. >> it is not our intention t for scream changregime change.
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>> reporter: many feel a strike is unlikely to shift momentum in syria. >> in terms of shifting the momentum on the ground, it's not likely. target strikes are nor powerful in terms of the signally that they achievish and sending a very strong message that the u.s. of chemical weapons will not be tolerated. >> reporter: many believe the president left himself little choice but to response. this was one year ago. >> a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized. >> reporter: president obama has been hesitant to get involved in syria. the majority of american people don't want it, and former ambassador robert hunter said the administration is afraid of who could come to power if assad falls. >> then what happens? what happens? is there a bloodbath? does al-qaida and its affiliates gain the upper hand?
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i think the idea is to try to calibrate a military action enough to send a message, but not so much to change momentum on the ground. if there is somebody who knows how to do that, i've never met that person. >> reporter: the obama administration is expected to
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to. >> why the rush to judgment? why not go to the u.n.? so what we have here is a military strike of incalculatible consequences. it took two years to verify who used weapons, that it was, indeed, the iraqis, and it contrasts very much with the rush to war today. as can be seen iraq was an ally, so chemical use was okay. but now they're seen as an enemy. so there is a rush to judgment.
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>> you yourself called it the i murderous assad regime. the obama administration is not pulling any punches in calling it an assad attack. what is are the political risks if the white house is wrong? >> there is a huge political risk. we've seen before when there were the iraqi weapons of mass destruction. that did not turn out so well, and the islamist invasion of iraq. so this has been long in the making. if the u.s. makes a strike without independent verification it will be widely perceived as illegitimate. it could send the region further into flames. it's a risky gamble. >> thank you for joining us. tom rice at the university of san diego. meanwhile a pro-syrian government group is claiming responsibility for attacking "the new york times" weapons tuesday. it was taken down by a group of
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hackers who called themselves "the syrian electronic army." users trying to access the times online came across error messages, and this is not the first time. the same group which is known for attacking media websites hacked the "washington post" web page just earlier this month. 11 major wildfires are burning in california, by far the most dangerous is the rim fire. the blaze has burned 41,000 acres in the park. that's what you're seeing right there. thousands of nearby homes are threatened, and firefighters are working around the clock. we spent the day with emergency crews on the front line of the rim fire. >> reporter: firefighters are gaining ground. protecting homes, protecting infrastructure such as power
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plans and the reservoir have been major challenges. the rim fire has become the largest fire in the nation so far this year in a ruthless fire season that has had firefighters hopscotching from incident to incident and from state to state. most firefighters have 24-hour long shifts and they're out here in the mountains whether its fighting the flames on the front lines or protecting buildings which is what they're doing here. the only way they can do this is with the help of multiple logistics teams. it is formerly called the incident command center. some call it face camp. it is set up to fight the fire. >> what the fire camp is a small city plucked in the middle of the wilderness to support all the people around it. >> reporter: here is the mobile command center and there is a tent set up as a medical clinic, and air operation as few steps away to determine water drops. >> copy that, thank you.
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>> reporter: supplies come in throughout the day keeping this camp city going providing critical items to the thousands of people working here. >> clean hot water, clean clothes goes a long ways when you're out there in the dirt and heat every day. >> reporter: perhaps the most important thing to keep engines running: food. after a long day firefighters look forward to their meal. each plate must provide 2,000-calories. enough to keep crews going. >> we talked to the firefighters on the lines. they said, joe, i went bacon cheeseburgers, french fries and potato salad. >> it's incredible. it's incredible. the crews that manage the kitchens and the entire base camp do such an outstanding job. >> reporter: the command center will continue to operate as long as the rim fire burns. when it's all over the city will pack up and go as if it never even existed. melissa chan, al jazeera, yosemite national park, southern
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california. >> meteorologist: well, on tuesday we saw temperatures reaching into the high 90s. heat index in some locations in the northern plains reached up to 113 degrees. as we go into wednesday, we're expecting to see a lot more of the same. that's all due to high pressure that is dominating across the central and northern regions. a lot of sun, but a lot of stagnant air as well. as long as the sun stays in the region, the warmer the temperatures will get. over here towards northeast we're watching for showers at the great lakes. they could make their way to pennsylvania. we could see spotty showers as we go in the afternoon time frame from new york as well as down here towards washington, west virginia, pennsylvania, ohio we expect to you see the strongest storms by wednesday afternoon. the highs on wednesday look like this, a beautiful day and we have clouds coming in to the
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forecast at 85 degrees. philadelphia, 88, albany, 84 degrees there. for new york, it looks like the temperatures will stay in the mid 80s. we think the hottest day will be on saturday at the beginning of the labor day weekend. up to 86 degrees by sunday. down towards the south we're seeing rain especially towards ngo. we have a disturbance coming off the bahamas. over towards orlando it will get a little bit better, but for new orleans you'll start to see better conditions. the highs for you on wednesday about 92 degrees there. look at shreveport, louisiana, we expect to see a high of 99. then in atlanta we have thunderstorms rumbling across the regions on thursday and into the low 90s with sunday looking at 91 degrees. >> it started 50 years ago as one of the largest demonstrati demonstrations in u.s. history.
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today the celebration of the most famous civil rights speech in history. coming up, something that you may not like. the government getting into your social network.
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>> martin luther king may be best remembered for his speech on the steps of the lincoln memorial, and is now famed declaration "i have a dream." but it was in birmingham, alabama, where dr. king delivered many argue was an equally important message and one penned on a scratch of paper after being arrested.
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>> i'm going say to you, wait a minute, birmingham, somebody has got to have some sense in birmingham. >> dr. martin luther king was invited to come to birmingham to help with the situation. >> as difficult as it is we must meet hate with love. >> dr. king was arrested on good friday, april 12, 1 19 1963. he was jailed for parading without a permit. he said have you seen this? i said what is this? he holds up a newspaper and in that newspaper there is a full-page ad signed by eight prominent white clergy men from birmingham. he was angry, he was hurt, but he was motivated like i'd never seen him motivated. i didn't pay any tensio attentio the letter. didn't even think about it. it was not in my mind until i
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suddenly learned that i think the quakers were going to public the letter in one of their newsletters, and that the letter using today's terminology, the letter went viral. >> i think the most important document of the 20th century, very much like the gettysburg address. >> dear fellow clergymen, while sitting in the birmingham jail i read your letter calling our activities unwise and untimely. >> your statements i'm sorry to say fail to express a similar concern but the conditions tha t
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demonstration. >> it is unfortunate that demonstrations are taking place in birmingham, but it is even more unfortunate that the cities white power structure left the negro community with no alternative. >> when you suddenly find your tongue twisted and your speech stammering,
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stammering,. >> all of that came from his heart. he wanted white america to see what they were doing. he wanted white america to see how hurtful it was. >> the letter was a national call to the conscience of america using real life, real time reality of birmingham as it's template. birmingham then became the spark that ignited the prairie fire of
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negro existence that was transformed into negro revolution. >> today thousands of people are expected to be in washington to celebrate the legacy of martin luther king jr. joining us now from a los angeles, president of the beverly hills hollywood branch naacp and member of the national board. thank you for being with us today. >> thank you for having me here, morgan. >> president obama is going to speak at the exact spot where dr. martin luther king spoke 50 years ago today. what do you hope to hear him say? >> well, i'm sure, and i hope that he will talk about the progress that we as america has made, and we as african-americans have really looked forward to in terms of being able to relate to society in terms of the progress that it has offered to people of color,
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black, other races, other parts of our society in terms of lgbt, immigration, and basically jobs as a whole. >> now you mentioned this progress, but is there still room for improvement, and do you think now having a black president we've kind of clou shd some of the progress we still have to make? >> certainly there is always room for improvement. the fact that we have a black president is a step in the right direction towards having a democratic black president who is for all people, and in particular looking out for those that are in greatest needs and insuring that our society, our america is providing services for all people. >> do you think that having a black president does insure that the weak in society are, in fact, being takenner care of? >> i would say yes. i think it's a step in the right
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direction. because president obama in many respects understands the trials and tribulations that black america is going through. he, himself, being black, and having lived in a city, and seen and experienced and to some degree some of the things that many black americans have experienced. i would say yes, he does have an understanding and a desire to want to be helpful to black american, but also being a president, being helpful to all americans. >> thank you so much, ron hassan, president of beverly hills hollywood branch of naacp. our coverage continues on al jazeera and the celebration at lincoln memorial begins today. in april a north korea court
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tensed kenneth bay to is a years of hard labor. he's now suffering from diabetes and an enlarged heart. the white house said they're completely concerned about his health and want north korea to send him home. you may not like this. but the social media giant said half requests about users is from the united states. 74 countries over all is asking for the info, and facebook is not alone. google and microsoft release numbers on how often government request data information. it was hailed as the e-cigarette. why thi this is being labeled dangerous. shakespeare goes behind bars in illinois. classic drama with a hip-hop twist. with the help from the inmates. that's the headlines "consider this" is up next on al jazeera.
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>> good morning. i'm morgan radford and these are some of the stories we're following today. the white house said it's confident that syria used chemical weapons against its own
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people. hundreds were killed in tan attack in a suburb of damascus last week. the president called prime minister david cameron to discuss the situation. the rim fire raging in the yosemite national park. glad floods are creating real headaches for people in southern california whereas much as two inches of rain have fallen per hour. and it doesn't stop there. the water surge has already created mudslides stranding drivers and shutting down roads. farewell dc, outgoing secretary of homeland security janet napolitano, she greed there were many challenges in her four years in office.
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>> the well-timed and coordinated emergency response that immediately followed the marathon attack was not accidental. it was the product of years of planning, training, and investment in building state and local capacity, and the quick orderly focused and comprehensive response by law enforcement first responders and the larger boston community on that day saved lives. napolitano said she's confident the obama administration will continue to successfully fight terrorism. a virus is likely to blame for the deaths of hundreds of bottle-nosed dolphins on the east coast. the culprit is likely the virus that killed 700 dolphins in the 1980s and other factors may
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have weakened the dolphins immune systems making them vulnerable to sickness. a new report says that electronic cigarettes are dangerous they contain a number of addictive chemicals, and they're not as safe as the manufacturers make them out to be. she humanity be banned but more regulated. shakespeare has new fans among the inmates of an illinois prison. a new production of othello as a hip-hop tragedy. >> it's a tragedy tailor made for the hip-hop era. [♪ music ] only this script is 400 years old. just recently freshened up with a modern touch. >> we've been telling stories since we were little kids in rhyme all the time. so rhyming is actually an entry
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point for most people. >> reporter: today's venue is no carnegie hall, but it is the largest single jail in the country where 500 choi inmates are experiencing "owe theothelle remix." thesit's all about repercussion, that i think are gooded to think about. >> reporter: they opened up in london last year. they follow mc othello as he escapes the ghetto and rises to the music industry. >> reporter: it's interesting to bring a story that ends in murder to the jail, but it turns out this just might be the target audience. >> i think a lot of them learn that they have a better opportunity to come out of this situation and be able to rebuild
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their lives. >> reporter: inmates weren't given much of a preface on the plot but in the end it managed to hit close to home. >> i had people who tried to turn me against somebody who i thought was good for me, and they were good for me, but i let somebody else persuade me into doing them wrong. >> you need to focus on what you're doing to make sure to think before you react. otherwise catastrophic events can happen. >> reporter: having performed all over the world this is the first true captive audience for the brothers, and one they don't judge and one they're able to help. >> everyone deserves a chance to make a new life for themselves. and the play says why we're here in we really didn't realize how that line would resonate until we were doing it. >> reporter: a moment of triumph over tragedy. that's what this is all about.
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al jazeera, chicago. >> talk about a major makeover, michigan governor rick snyder announced a federal and state backed plan to demolish abandoned homes in detroit. now thousands of vacant homes in the bankrupt city will be torn down in the next eight months. the governor said a lot of these empty builds attract crime and contribute 60% to fire. it will be the biggest elimination projects in michigan state history. breaking news out of iraq where a series of bomb attacks has killed 16 police and medical sources. we'll bring you more on that shortly. that will do it for this edition of al jazeera news. please fill free to follow us at, and
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we'll bring you the latest information on that breaking story. until then we'll see you at 4:00.

Al Jazeera America August 28, 2013 2:00am-2:31am EDT

News/Business. Breaking and in-depth news coverage from America and around the world. New. (CC) (Stereo)

TOPIC FREQUENCY U.s. 6, Syria 6, Obama Administration 4, Us 4, America 4, Washington 3, Dolphins 2, Dr. Martin Luther King 2, Michigan 2, White America 2, Pennsylvania 2, Illinois 2, Southern California 2, California 2, Bahamas 1, Morgan Radford 1, Martin Luther 1, Kenneth 1, Ron Hassan 1, April 1
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